How to Recover a Wireless Network Security Key

By Jedadiah Casey

Occasionally, the wireless network security key is accidentally forgotten, and you are no longer able to connect to the wireless network. Without the wireless network security key, you will be unable to log on to the Internet. To recover the key, ensure that a physical Ethernet cable is connected between one of the computers on the network and the router.

Things You'll Need

  • Ethernet cable

Step 1

Open a Web browser from a computer that is connected to the wireless router via Ethernet cable. Go to the address "" and wait for the password prompt. If you're connecting to a Linksys router, leave the user name blank, and enter "admin" for the password. For other router types, such as Netgear, D-Link and Buffalo, enter "admin" for the user name and "password" for the password.

Step 2

Click the wireless networking security link.

Step 3

Copy or change the existing wireless password and enter it on the wireless client computer.

Tips & Warnings

  • If the default user name and password for the router do not work, use the user name and password that the router was configured with. If this information is unknown, the router will need to be reset. To reset the router, remove the power cord and hold in the reset button. Plug the power back in while holding the reset button for 10 seconds. Release the reset button and wait 30 seconds for the router to reinstall the default settings.